Louisiana ranks 3rd-worst state to raise a family in 2022


Tyesha Young, who lost her hospital job during the pandemic, holds her baby Jalayah Johnson outside their home in Waggaman, La., Friday, July 2, 2021. More than $7,000 behind on rent, Young had hoped a program in Louisiana would bail her out and allow her family to avert eviction in the coming weeks. But the 29-year-old mother of two from Jefferson Parish is still waiting to hear whether any of the $308 million available from the state for rental assistance and utility payments will give her a lifeline. She applied for money last year but never heard anything. (AP Photo/Sophia Germer)

(KTAL/KMSS) – A new study compared metrics like healthcare, education, childcare, housing costs, and more to find out where the best and worst places to raise a family are in the United States.

Louisiana ranked 48 out of 50 as the third-worst state to raise a family in 2022. Factors that influence where a family may want to live include the cost of childcare and housing, whether an area is rural or urban, and quality of life issues like activities available in the area. By comparing metrics in the five groups of socioeconomics, affordability, education and care, health and safety, and family fun, WalletHub created a list of where each state falls across the spectrum.

Massachusetts was rated the best state to raise a family, whereas Mississippi was rated the worst overall.

Some crucial indicators of an excellent place to raise a family are poverty rates, crime rates, and access to healthcare.

Louisiana ranked 49th in highest infant mortality rates, with Mississippi at the highest level, placing 50th. Other vital factors where Louisiana ranked in the lowest 5 are the percent of families in poverty, the highest separation and divorce rates, and the most violent crimes per capita.

In a survey of school systems including Washington D.C. and the 50 states that included test scores, graduation rates, access to materials and technology, safety, and academic performance, Louisiana ranked 50 of 51.

According to Greatschools.org, 60 percent of the schools in Caddo Parish rate below state norms. 18 percent of Caddo schools rate above the state average. Only 26 percent of Bossier Parish schools rate below the state average, with 39 percent above the average.

Family Fun was the highest-ranked family-friendly category, where Louisiana placed at number 18. That includes the number of families with young children, number of attractions, fitness and rec centers per capita, and the share of children aged 0-17 who live in neighborhoods with a park or playground.

For more details, see the full report.

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